Italian Fall Break

We’ve reached the halfway point in our study abroad experience, and CAPA has generously given us a week of no classes and no internship. So, I packed my bags and set off for an 8-day excursion throughout Italy. My trip began in Venice on Saturday the 28th and ended in Rome on Saturday the 4th.

After saying goodbye to my parents, and finishing my last day at my internship for the week, I headed home to put together everything I needed for Italy. On Saturday we left for the airport at 9:30 AM with plans to be in Italy at 3 PM their time. Fortunately, everything went as planned and we made it to Venice ready to explore. The plane flew directly over the Alps and I already knew this was going to be an amazing trip. When we touched down in Venice, the first thing I realized was I am going to have to figure out how to communicate with people. After finding some people who spoke English in the airport we made our way to the hostel and the start of our trip.

When we finally got to the island of Venice the sun had already set so it was hard to tell exactly what the city looked like. However, after walking around a bit I soon realized that it was a city of small alleyways and bridges to cross the canals. After sitting down to eat and getting our first Italian gelato we made our way back to the hostel so that we can explore the next day. And that we did. The next day we essentially spent the whole time explore every nook and cranny on the island. Venice is a beautiful city with no cars and lovely people. Also, even though it is a tourist destination it really didn’t seem that crowded walking around. I loved being in the city and plan on retiring there when I’m older.

However, since there isn’t a ton to do we decided to make our way to Florence for the second leg of the trip. Our first day in Florence was an exploring day. We went to the center of the city where the Duomo is and found one of the best sandwich places in the world, Il Fratellini. It was so good we ate there twice while we were in Florence. After exploring the city we made the treck up to Piazza de Michaelangelo to overlook the city. The views were spectacular and it was right at sunset making it even better. That night I had arguably my best dinner on the whole trip, a plate of spaghetti carbonara with bacon. YUM!

The next day we decided to take a quick hour-long train ride to Pisa and see the Leaning Tower of Pisa (AKA the oldest tourist trap ever created). It was a nice little trip but I never need to go back again. Afterwards, we returned to Florence to walk up the Duomo, which was over 500 steps. The views were spectacular and again it was right at sunset so it made it even better.

The next day we went and saw the David statue which was amazing. It’s crazy seeing the amount of detail up close and in person. After visiting the museum we made our way to Chianti region of Italy to look at the wine country. It was an amazing experience and we got to taste some of this wines and olive oils Italy has to offer.

The next way we made our way to our final stop, Rome.  Rome is an amazing city but also extremely crowded. The Vatican was beautiful and was truly a religious experience. We also saw the Colosseum, Palatine Hill, the Roman Forum, Trevi Fountain, and the Spanis Steps. Overall Rome allowed me to see how advanced the Romans were and how young America is.

I am now back in London for the latter half of my trip, which is hard to believe. I am excited about what else is in store but am not ready for the trip to be over.